Giuseppe Ceracchi (1751–1802) Artist: John Trumbull (American, 1756–1843)

1792

American Paintings and Sculpture

On view, 2nd floor, American Art before 1900


This portrait of Giuseppe Ceracchi is part of a set of miniatures John Trumbull painted in Philadelphia in 1792. A sculptor and  fervent revolutionary, Ceracchi came to America from Italy in 1791 hoping to receive a commission for a sculpture depicting Liberty. While waiting for Congress to respond to his proposal, he executed terra-cotta busts and medallions of leading political figures, including George Washington, John Adams, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton. Only a few of these studies were carved in marble. Trumbull later tried to recover the originals, but Ceracchi had taken them back to Europe after his project was voted down. Ceracchi also modeled a bust of Trumbull, perhaps at the same time that Trumbull painted his miniature.

Medium

Oil on wood

Dimensions

3 7/8 × 3 in. (9.8 × 7.6 cm)

Credit Line

Trumbull Collection

Accession Number

1832.40

Culture
Period

18th century

Classification
Disclaimer

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.

Bibliography
  • Helen A. Cooper et al., Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2008), 100, no. 42, ill
  • Helen A. Cooper et al., John Trumbull: The Hand and Spirit of a Painter (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1982), 130, pl. 56-60
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

miniatures (paintings), portraits

Signed

Signed verso: "Signr. Ceracchi/of Rome./Philadelphia/1792.painted by/John Trumbull."

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